Acta Phys. -Chim. Sin. ›› 2013, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (07): 1370-1384.doi: 10.3866/PKU.WHXB201304191

• REVIEW • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Research Progress in Atomic Resolution Microscopy

YUAN Bing-Kai1,2, CHEN Peng-Cheng1, ZHANG Jun1, CHENG Zhi-Hai1, WANG Chen1, QIU Xiao-Hui1   

  1. 1 National Center for Nanoscience and Technology, Beijing 100190, P. R. China;
    2 Academy for Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Peking University, Beijing 100871, P. R. China
  • Received:2013-01-14 Revised:2013-04-17 Published:2013-06-14
  • Contact: WANG Chen, QIU Xiao-Hui;
  • Supported by:

    The project was supported by the National Key Basic Research Program of China (2012CB933001) and National Natural Science Foundation of China (21173058).


Tremendous progress has been made in non-contact atomic force microscopy (NC-AFM) recently. The spatial resolution of NC-AFM imaging and spectroscopy of individual molecules on surfaces has reached true atomic resolution and bond differentiation level. Combination of NC-AFM with other scanning probe techniques can open a new way for materials, physics, chemistry, and biochemistry studies. In this review, we first introduce the basic principle of NC-AFM and qPlus sensor. The interaction force at atomic scale and precise measurement of short-range force are discussed. We summarize the recent advances in structural determination of organic molecules, chemical identification, electronic structure, and atomic manipulation at the atomic scale. In addition, we also discuss the application of Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM) in measurement of local contact potential difference (LCPD). Finally, perspectives and challenges in NC-AFM techniques are presented.

Key words: Scanning probe microscopy, Non-contact atomic force microscopy, qPlus sensor, Chemical identification, Atomic manipulation, Electronic structure, Kelvin probe force microscopy


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